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4 days ago
Gold Coast coach John Cartwright remains sceptical of the NRL's relaxing of the obstruction rule and has urged referees to adopt commonsense in their interpretation.
NRL coaches and referees have recommended the stricter interpretation of the obstruction rule be relaxed and greater emphasis now should be placed on whether referees believe a defender has been impeded or not.
But Cartwright - who was fined $5000 after he confronted Steve Nash in the video referee's box about a decision against the Titans two weeks ago - says it is too early to say whether the change will make a difference and is waiting to see referees put it into practice.
NRL referees' coach Robert Finch says players, coaches and fans need to show patience and respect the referees when they apply judgment to decisions.
Meanwhile, Cronulla lock Paul Gallen hopes the NRL's harsh scheduling doesn't ruin his chances of retaining his NSW State of Origin jumper.
Gallen was ruled out of the NSW City Origin team to play NSW Country tomorrow night in Coffs Harbour because club doctors didn't believe his right ankle could handle playing three games in six days.
The 26-year-old lock has been playing with painkilling injections since returning from a serious pre-season ankle injury four weeks ago and he says the added travel the Sharks face this week made it impossible for him to play the representative match.
The Sharks played in Newcastle on Monday and their remaining rep players - Brett Kimmorley, Lance Thompson, Ben Pomeroy, Greg Bird and Reece Williams - have to play in Coffs Harbour tomorrow and then travel and play again in Auckland on Saturday.
Gallen was named to play the Warriors on Saturday and he knows he must improve his performance at club level to be any chance of retaining his sky blue jersey from challengers including teammate Greg Bird, Melbourne's Ryan Hoffman and Gold Coast's Anthony Laffranchi.